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PSO sends workers to California to assist PG&E with power outages

Posted at 4:49 PM, Oct 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-29 18:59:17-04

According to CNN, on October 25, California's largest utility company sent a warning out to about 850,000 customers that another intentional power outage may leave them in the dark.

Pacific Gas & Electric has been cutting off electricity for customers in northern and central California over the past weeks in an attempt to avoid sparking wildfires. But this could be the utility's largest outage this year.

Estimates indicate the potential outage could affect more than 2 million people, a spokesperson with the company said. Customers across 36 counties in Northern and Central California may lose power.

In an effort to help, the Public Service Company of Oklahoma has sent more than two dozen employees to California to assist PG&E address power outages associated with that state’s ongoing high winds and wildfire emergency. The employees from PSO’s Tulsa, Lawton and McAlester Districts will be arriving in Sacramento, then given their work assignments and locations.

Due to ongoing high wind conditions, some PG&E power lines have been de-energized to prevent them from causing or contributing to wildfires. Other power lines have been damaged by fire. The role of the PSO workers will be to inspect and assess the condition of PG&E facilities to help determine which are ready to be re-energized, and which will require repairs.

“Although in this situation our employees won’t be working on the lines to restore power, PG&E has a critical need for experienced line personnel to help them get a handle on the best and safest way to help address this emergency while their workers focus on outage recovery,” said PSO’s vice president for Distribution, Steve Baker.

According to Baker, there is no definitive time frame for the PSO workers to remain in California, but they were told before leaving to prepare for a stay of a week or more.

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